I missed out on the first Shock Force because funds were low and in the end I got the Battle for Normandy version. The need to get the modern equipment version has always been there.
A generous demo version was released recently and I got a chance to have a crack at the scenarios. I am really pleased with it. I’m getting the British Forces version at the end of November when I get paid.
Flying at low level, at speed to avoid the threats from an integrated missile defence system is hard work and demands quite a focused approach to say the least. With the help of a bit of TFR or Terrain Following Radar this task becomes a bit less stressful.
Low Altitude Navigation and Targeting Infrared for Night
This device allowed fighter jets — first F-15s and F-16s and later F-14 Tomcats — to see in abject darkness and adverse weather conditions by transforming heat patterns outside the aircraft into vivid, glow-in-the-dark displays on cockpit monitors.
The system’s special Terrain-Following Radar (TFR) then scanned the topography of its surrounding area, plotting a course that allowed jets to streak at low altitudes in speeds in excess of 500 miles per hour, rendering them nearly invisible to enemy radar. In addition to day/night imagery, the system allowed pilots to pinpoint targets and cue the delivery of precision guided weapons.
The system used in BMS 4.33 is comprehensive and at first can seem a bit intimidating to anyone not familiar with a bit more complexity than what is usually on offer in flight simulations. However after a bit of reading and the odd tutorial here and there it’s a great bit of kit to use and a lot of fun.
I haven’t flown in BMS for well over 6 months and it sits on my desktop like an old friend that I have lost contact with. I recently saw a video of a guy showing some in depth features of mission planning in the campaigns.
I had no idea you could add/delete change squadrons and do a whole lot more with this free tool that you can get here.
So I have been busy planning a strike package on an enemy runway. In much the same way you use Command: Modern Air/Naval Operations you assign and use various assets to complete your mission. The tricky part is timing. This is easily overcome by using that old fashioned method of actually writing things down. Watching it all unfold from the cockpit of an F-16 is simply fantastic.
You can also watch the scenario play out from the campaign screen. This method is viewed as cheating but as a good commander rehearsal is an important aspect of planning. Yes it is!
Yep, just look at those glorious pixels!
I recently got in touch with a chap called Frankie who has built a website all about Tornado after working on the source code for over a year to produce mods and many changes. If you want to download it and fly for free you can get it here. It is so easy to get running. This just adds to the overall joy of flying it.
Tornado was released in 1993. I had very little money (nothing changes)in the British Army serving abroad, and not have a PC. Not a great position to be in to take the time to fly this remarkable study sim. I was aware that it was out and I remember reading great reviews inside PC gaming magazines of that time. When I was on leave I would go into a shop where you could buy games off the shelf in those large boxes which I collect now and I would hold Tornado in my hands and marvel at the weight of it all.
25 years later I am now flying it on my Windows 10 OS without any problems. You soon get over the shock of the graphics and realise how spoilt we have all become now days.
Flying fast and low into a hostile area is what it’s all about with this simulation. However the real gem the actual real heart of this is the mission planning. It is complex without being hard to use and a simply superb part of the game. You can coordinate strike packages to arrive at a target with precision and it works better than any modern mission planner.